Britain asks UN to stop Darfur raids

Britain is pressing for the UN Security Council to take action to resolve the humanitarian crisis in Sudan's Darfur region, despite resistance from other council members, the Secretary of State for International Development said yesterday.

Britain is pressing for the UN Security Council to take action to resolve the humanitarian crisis in Sudan's Darfur region, despite resistance from other council members, the Secretary of State for International Development said yesterday.

Hilary Benn said Britain was working on a draft resolution for a peace-keeping mission to enforce the deal ending Khartoum's long war with rebels in southern Sudan. "It seems inconceivable that the council should pass a resolution relating to Sudan that doesn't deal with the crisis in Darfur," Mr Benn said in London after returning from western Sudan. "This is the most serious humanitarian emergency in the world today."

Government-backed Arab militias, called Janjaweed, have driven out more than one million Africans from their homes in what has been described as a scorched-earth campaign of ethnic cleansing. Mr Benn, who also briefed Parliament yesterday, said that he saw burnt-out villages on his visit.

"I made it very clear to the government of Sudan that they must bear the primary responsibility of bringing the fighting to an end, for reining in the Janjaweed and other militias, and for seeking a political solution," Mr Benn said.

He added that the UK position in calling for the draft resolution to include Darfur, "is not a view shared by everybody". Although the US agrees with the British position, it appears that there is resistance among some council members to be seen to be "Arab-bashing" so soon after the Iraq war.

Mr Benn's Tory shadow, John Bercow, said: "Given that it is vital that the impotence and passivity of the UN in the face of genocide in Rwanda are not repeated now in Sudan, you need to press for a robust Security Council resolution which explicitly condemns the government of Sudan for the ethnic cleansing in Darfur." He called for an investigation into possible war crimes in Darfur.

Suggested Topics
Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Ashdown Group: Senior VMware Platform Engineer - VMware / SAN / Tier3 DC

£45000 - £55000 per annum + benefits: Ashdown Group: Senior VMware Platform En...

Recruitment Genius: Purchasing Assistant

£10000 - £16000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A distributor of specialist ele...

Recruitment Genius: Sales Ledger Assistant

£17000 - £19000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A distributor of specialist ele...

Ashdown Group: Automated Tester / Test Analyst - .Net / SQL - Cheshire

£32000 per annum + pension, healthcare & 23 days holiday: Ashdown Group: A gro...

Day In a Page

War with Isis: Iraq's government fights to win back Tikrit from militants - but then what?

Baghdad fights to win back Tikrit from Isis – but then what?

Patrick Cockburn reports from Kirkuk on a conflict which sectarianism has made intractable
Living with Alzheimer's: What is it really like to be diagnosed with early-onset dementia?

What is it like to live with Alzheimer's?

Depicting early-onset Alzheimer's, the film 'Still Alice' had a profound effect on Joy Watson, who lives with the illness. She tells Kate Hilpern how she's coped with the diagnosis
The Internet of Things: Meet the British salesman who gave real-world items a virtual life

Setting in motion the Internet of Things

British salesman Kevin Ashton gave real-world items a virtual life
Election 2015: Latest polling reveals Tories and Labour on course to win the same number of seats - with the SNP holding the balance of power

Election 2015: A dead heat between Mr Bean and Dick Dastardly!

Lord Ashcroft reveals latest polling – and which character voters associate with each leader
Audiences queue up for 'true stories told live' as cult competition The Moth goes global

Cult competition The Moth goes global

The non-profit 'slam storytelling' competition was founded in 1997 by the novelist George Dawes Green and has seen Malcolm Gladwell, Salman Rushdie and Molly Ringwald all take their turn at the mic
Pakistani women come out fighting: A hard-hitting play focuses on female Muslim boxers

Pakistani women come out fighting

Hard-hitting new play 'No Guts, No Heart, No Glory' focuses on female Muslim boxers
Leonora Carrington transcended her stolid background to become an avant garde star

Surreal deal: Leonora Carrington

The artist transcended her stolid background to become an avant garde star
LGBT History Month: Pupils discuss topics from Sappho to same-sex marriage

Education: LGBT History Month

Pupils have been discussing topics from Sappho to same-sex marriage
11 best gel eyeliners

Go bold this season: 11 best gel eyeliners

Use an ink pot eyeliner to go bold on the eyes with this season's feline flicked winged liner
Cricket World Cup 2015: Tournament runs riot to make the event more hit than miss...

Cricket World Cup runs riot to make the event more hit than miss...

The tournament has reached its halfway mark and scores of 300 and amazing catches abound. One thing never changes, though – everyone loves beating England
Katarina Johnson-Thompson: Heptathlete ready to jump at first major title

Katarina Johnson-Thompson: Ready to jump at first major title

After her 2014 was ruined by injury, 21-year-old Briton is leading pentathlete going into this week’s European Indoors. Now she intends to turn form into gold
Syrian conflict is the world's first 'climate change war', say scientists, but it won't be the last one

Climate change key in Syrian conflict

And it will trigger more war in future
How I outwitted the Gestapo

How I outwitted the Gestapo

My life as a Jew in wartime Berlin
The nation's favourite animal revealed

The nation's favourite animal revealed

Women like cuddly creatures whilst men like creepy-crawlies
Is this the way to get young people to vote?

Getting young people to vote

From #VOTESELFISH to Bite the Ballot